MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY
Inflation tracker CPI up 0.4 percent in December and 1.4 percent year-on-year
The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.4 percent in December on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.2 percent in November, and was up 1.4 percent year-on-year. The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.1 percent in December after rising 0.2 percent in the previous month, and was also up 1.4 percent year-on-year.
Home Purchase Sentiment slips 6.0 points in December, down 17.7 points year-on-year
The Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) fell for the second straight month in December to 74.0, a 6.0 point decline from November. Year over year, the HPSI is down 17.7 points. Five of the six HPSI components decreased month over month, and consumers reported a substantially more pessimistic view of homebuying and home-selling conditions, which drove the relatively large monthly change.
Purchase loans apps up 8 percent from previous week and 60 percent year-on-year
The Market Composite Index increased 16.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier, with purchase loans rising 8 percent (and up 60 percent year-on-year) and refinance activity rising 20 percent (and up 93 percent year-on-year. The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances increased to 2.88 percent from 2.86 percent.
December Small Business Optimism Index falls 5.5 points to 95.9, below long-term average of 98
The Small Business Optimism Index declined 5.5 points in December to 95.9, falling below the average Index value (since 1973) of 98. Nine of the 10 Index components declined and only one improved.